While exploring the area near our condo, we discovered a business nearby that sold various excursions and activities for tourists. We ended up befriending the business owner, Bau, who was very helpful in arranging activities for us. At the top of our list of tours was a visit to the nearby elephant sanctuary. Elephants are a big business in Thailand, and we learned a lot about how some of the businesses mistreat the animals. We made sure to visit one of the reputable places that strive to care for elephants that have been rescued from bad situations. It was an amazing sight as we drove up and saw these animals up close.
After an initial "meet and greet" with the elephants (haha) we joined a large group for an organized tour of the sanctuary. We were given the chance to make the elephant food mixture and then we all walked together to feed the elephants their lunch.
After feeding the elephants, the group was given the opportunity to bathe them in a huge mud pit. It was the highlight of the afternoon for several of the group members, but I'll be honest -- this didn't appeal to anyone in our family, ha! Collin, Kevin, and Kaitlynn braved the mud pit for a quick minute and then came right back out. I was personally surprised at so many of the larger group who had no problem getting all muddy and up close with the elephants in the pit. No, thank you. Ha!
The elephant sanctuary was a really neat experience for our family and one we won't soon forget. And being that the elephant is the national symbol of Thailand, it was the perfect excursion for us to see and experience in Phuket.
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